The contractor membership of the Association of the Wall and Ceiling Industries (AWCI) makes up more than 50 percent of current construction volume in the United States. The AWCI has developed intensive training programs geared toward maintaining contractor expertise with increasingly sophisticated construction systems and ever changing building codes. Furthermore, AWCI is home to an excellent library of wall and ceiling information. Within AWCI are recognized experts in the theory and application of the building sciences who are there to help contractor members. Their expert advice helps insure that AWCI contractors have the expertise, knowledge, and craftsmanship needed for successful installation of wall and ceiling systems.
Experience with Building Systems
Most contracting firms within AWCI have been involved in commercial construction for many years. With their longevity comes the experience needed to successfully install interior and exterior building systems. AWCI commercial contracting firms have worked on the smallest to the most significant projects in the country, and they have applied their critical knowledge to successfully integrate the systems they install with building components installed by other trades.
Understanding How Components Work Together to Form a System
Successful system installations are predicated upon knowing and understanding how the individual components within the system should work. Proper detailing is as important as the sequencing process is for the installation. Today’s construction systems are not only highly complex, but they are sensitive to adjacent systems as well. For example, the performance of an air barrier in the exterior envelope can be adversely affected by the mechanical, electrical, and plumbing penetrations. Fire resistance, acoustics, and heat transfer can also be affected. AWCI contractors have the understanding and awareness to effectively install integrated assemblies.
Understanding Building Codes & Standards
The staff of AWCI is actively involved in the building codes and standards community. Also, manufacturer member organizations have individuals who monitor regulatory agencies in the industry. Through training programs, webinars and printed media, information related to significant code and standard changes are disseminated to the contractor members in a timely manner thus insuring that AWCI contractors are kept current about the ever evolving code requirements.
Use of Digital Technology, Such as BIM
Through training and committee involvement, contractors of AWCI are becoming the go-to source in the industry in the use and understanding of the latest digital technology. There is no question that BIM (Building Information Modeling) is a major driving force in the transformation of the construction industry. Gone are the days when construction documents were limited to two dimensional drawings and text. The BIM model extends traditional design to a three dimensional model which includes key object information. This model than becomes a living document that follows the complete life-cycle of the building. It provides a continuous and open communication of data to all members of the design team, contractor, and ultimately the owner. AWCI contractors and their building product manufacturer partners play a larger role in the construction project.